The secret to alumna Ashley Hum’s staying power

March 26, 2021 |
Contributed by Josh Hidalgo, Communications Intern

Ashley Hum

For Ashley Hum (BCom’10), hard work and perseverance always pay off. She wasn’t just an undergraduate student of the Honours Bachelor of Commerce (BCom) program. Hum worked hard to pay for her education while acting as external VP of the DeGroote Commerce Society (DCS) and getting involved at McMaster’s Career and Professional Development Office.

She persevered when she discovered that finance wasn’t the right fit for her during her graduating year. Hum decided to take a new path that translated into her current career as an executive leadership recruiter for Google Cloud. Her success has been no accident.

I’m very grateful that I have my degree from DeGroote. DeGroote really does make our graduates well-equipped and well-rounded in comparison to other universities. I admit I’m not a book smart person, but I studied hard and learned by doing. Having the internship program and opportunities to utilize our skills helped a ton when it came to deciding where I wanted to go and how I wanted to navigate my career.

A career in technical recruiting

Another secret to Hum’s success was that she bounced back from disappointments by adapting to change. After initially taking the finance route by doing an internship at State Street as an investment valuations coordinator, she realized she wanted to do something different. While at DeGroote, Hum fostered valuable connections. It is these connections and her relationship-building skills that prompted Hum to explore technical recruiting.

Hum joined TEKsystems, an IT recruiting company, and worked her way up to become an account manager. Eventually, she decided to start her technical recruiting firm and travel from Toronto to San Francisco, Eastern Washington, and finally settling in Seattle. After four and a half years of growing her business, she was ready to embrace new challenges. One of her business clients who had recently joined Google recommended she apply to work as a technical recruiter. Once Hum earned the role, she began helping source the next best talent for Google Cloud.

I’m lucky to be in the tech sector, especially in Cloud, because it has been a thriving source at Google right now. Without Cloud, a lot of people can’t work or utilize their data effectively. So I am thankful that I’m actually in an opportunity where we can truly make an impact and help people across the globe.

Interview tips for new graduates

As an expert in executive-level recruiting, Hum has learned the ins and outs of interviewing skills. She describes Google as an “intentional hirer,” with the mindset that each new employee is committed to the company for the long-term. For someone who’s interviewed countless candidates, Ashley has developed effective criteria to evaluate her interviews. She recalls the STAR formula, a technique taught in the BCom 2IN0 Internship course. Hum advises candidates not to take the formulas too seriously. Still, She emphasizes the importance of using them to guide your thoughts and ideas.

Here are some things to consider:

  • What makes you stand out?
  • If I wanted to work with you, would I like to work with you?
  • Don’t shy away from your personality.
Take the time to be yourself, too. When you get the interview, we’ve already seen your qualifications, we’ve seen your resume, but we also want to know you. Overall, just be you and use your personal experiences to share with the interviewer anything they might not know about you. These are the qualities that make us interested in wanting to hire you.

 

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